Late June saw me attend the Devoted and Disgruntled satellite event What Are We Going To Do About Theatre Criticism and followed by calls to action from other bloggers who wanted to hear more voices than just the reviewing one, I decided that I would give it a try and attempt to bring a different perspective onto certain issues that I felt I could contribute to. I had the best intentions but life has pretty much got in the way since then and I haven’t really had the time to devote to writing. But one issue has kept burbling around in my brain and it was all brought back to me in various ways last week, so here goes (apologies for the length).
The subject I decided to hold a session on at the above-mentioned event was “Should bloggers aim for/be held to a set of professional standards/code of conduct” the notes of which can be read but a quick summary was a definitive rejection of the statement and a recognition that blogging is an individual act which can’t (and shouldn’t) be policed. I have to admit to being a little surprised by this, but as the discussion progressed I realised that the issue I really wanted to delve into was an offshoot of the original question: something along the lines of ‘what value would a bloggers association have and is it desirable’, this similar idea of trying to provide some sort of structure that bloggers could rely upon if necessary.
It’s something that resonates with me as, without wishing to play the ‘woe is me’ card, I have been involved in a couple of extremely bruising online encounters which resulted in some pretty vicious commentary being flung my way and leaving me questioning whether I wanted to continue blogging at all. The first time it happened, it was genuinely upsetting to have my motivations questioned so publicly and my working practices dissected so brutally without any prior communication with the people throwing out their opinions, but I was fortunate enough to have an amazing group of fellow bloggers and Twitter buddies to keep my spirits from falling too low and keeping me going whilst I tried to regain my equilibrium. Continue reading “Blogged: When social media really is social (and not so much)”